I'm trying to start the setup of a media server, where I can house my movie collection (xvid, 720p, 1080p), music, and photos. Today, I store all of this in one big machine, with 4 HDDS, each 2 TB - today I've got about 3-4TB of data.
The problem is that this big unit sits in a home-entertainment area where I don't have great ventilation (it's inside a wall unit). I'd rather put one small machine in the unit (probably an Assassin HTPC) , and keep a server elsewhere. Plus, the big unit today is a bit unstable (not 100% sure why), so I'd rather keep the storage HDDs separately, and ideally in a more reliable storage environment.
I'm new to media storage, and I've spent a couple hours trying to go through the 228 page thread Guide to Building a Media Storage Server
. But it's a little daunting, and really am not 100% sure where to start. I had a few questions:
1) Is RAID relevant for me? What is 'Unraid'?
2) Does anyone (like Assassin) sell pre-built media storage servers, where I can install my HDDs, plug it into the home network, and have it run? I've read a bit about the Synology DS411 - would that suit my needs?
3) In terms of priorities for me, it would be: 1) ease of setup (I love tinkering but don't have the time - readymade of high quality makes most sense for me) 2) speed of access (read / write) across the home network, 3) reliability / safety of data, 4) power consumption efficiency
4) Should I use Windows Server? FreeNAS? Based on my priorities, what would you suggest?
Apologies for the vague question in advance. If someone can point me to a previous post - or a place in a post - that goes through this well, would be great. I love to tinker with these setups, and have been doing so with my HTPC for years now, but don't have a lot of time for it, so something (like the Assassin HTPCs), where not a lot of work is req'd from my end, would be awesome.
Thanks in advance!